A group of lawmakers jointly filed an amicus brief supporting the petitioners in the pending U.S. Supreme Court case Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency.
The decision in the case will clarify what waterways are considered “waters of the United States,” or WOTUS, which will determine the scope of the federal government’s authority in regulating private citizens and businesses under the Clean Water Act. Specifically, the brief argues that the Supreme Court should adopt a longstanding, limited-scope definition of WOTUS proposed by Justice Antonin Scalia in a 2006 case.
Senate Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa helped lead the effort. Grassley and the lawmakers say, “we support policies that protect the environment while also ensuring that States retain their traditional role as the primary regulators of land and water resources.” Grassley adds, “This case presents an opportunity for the Court to finally put the genie back in the bottle.” More than 100 U.S. Representatives also signed the brief.